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The Taming of the Shrew (1980)

The swaggering Petruchio agrees to marry the spitting hellcat, Katherine.

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Anthony Pedley ...
John Franklyn-Robbins ...
...
Sarah Badel ...
Katherine
Jonathan Cecil ...
...
Harry Waters ...
...
David Kincaid ...
...
Baptista's Servant
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Harry Webster ...
Gil Morris ...
...
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Storyline

Baptista has two daughters: Kate and Bianca. Everyone wants to wed the fair Bianca, but nobody's much interested in problem child, Kate. Baptista declares that he won't give Bianca away in a marriage until he's found a husband for Kate, so all the suitors begin busily hunting out a madman who's willing to do it, and they find Petruchio: a man who's come to wive it wealthily in Padua. And Petruchio marries Kate with a plan to tame her, while everybody else begins scheming to win Bianca's hand. Written by Kathy Li

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Genres:

Comedy | Romance

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Release Date:

23 October 1980 (UK)  »

Also Known As:

To imeroma tis striglas  »

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Technical Specs

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Aspect Ratio:

1.33 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Jonathan Miller told John Cleese that the episode would interpret Petruchio as an early Puritan more concerned with attempting to show Kate how preposterous her behaviour is ("showing her an image of herself" as Miller put it), rather than bullying her into submission, and as such, the part was not to be acted along the traditional lines of the swaggering braggart a la Richard Burton in Franco Zeffirelli's The Taming of the Shrew (1967). See more »

Connections

Version of La mégère apprivoisée (1911) See more »

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User Reviews

This is the best "Shrew" I've ever seen.
26 September 1999 | by (El Cerrito, CA) – See all my reviews

This production does for The Shrew what Zeffirelli's "Romeo and Juliet" did for that play: it makes clear the central meaning of the piece. By stripping away the usual thigh-thwacking, twinkle-in-the-eye, campy, vaudevillian action usually associated with this work, wherein the headstrong Katherine is brought into submission by the charming rogue Petruchio, we are able to see clearly what Petruchio's approach is: he shows Katherine her own behavior in reflection. Petruchio is holding up the mirror for her, showing her that she is the prisoner of her own negative emotions. And who would take the time, make the effort to do such work, if they did not care for the person in question? This Katherine and Petruchio are not combatants, they are soul-mates defining their understanding of each other. At their first meeting it is clear that Kate has never had a man of such wit and character endure her raging, out of desire for her; and in the end we see that Katherine is not broken (the famous last speech), but that at last she has stopped thinking only of herself, and gained insight and compassion for others. I've seen a lot of versions of this play (including Burton & Taylor, Julia & Streep, & Singer & Olster), and this is the most adult, the most understanding, the most human. And the funniest.


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